Sony HT-AX7 experience: Take apart and assemble like building blocks, Sony uses the gameplay of true wireless headphones to make a speaker

Recently, Sony launched a new form of speaker – the building block speaker HT-AX7.

As the name suggests, this is a speaker that can be used in separate combinations. The small round cake on the top can be detached and turned into a simple wireless speaker.

Let’s take a look at the packaging first. Sony began to use environmentally friendly packaging around the time of the WF-1000XM4. This oval-shaped package, which is white and has small black dots similar to chocolate chips, is just enough to completely store the entire HT-AX7. The volume is not particularly large and can be used as a special storage box. You can pack it up and put it in the trunk when going on a long trip or camping to avoid bumps.

The color scheme of HT-AX7 is somewhat similar to this packaging, with a simple and luxurious style. The overall gray and white woven fabric texture is matched with a dark gray body, and velvet is added to the panels corresponding to the speakers. This can add a little acoustic element visually, and the velvet material is more stain-resistant than other materials.

The fuselage consists of a pair of rear speakers and a front speaker. There are coils and switches for powering on the bottom of the two rear speakers, and magnetic devices are installed around the coils. When users place the satellite speakers on both sides on the main box, the magnetic structure can achieve a simple guidance effect, allowing users to easily place the speakers into the correct position.

The magnetic suction force is just enough to give you a feeling of guiding power, so you don’t need to worry about alignment when installing.

In terms of weight, the single rear speaker of HT-AX7 weighs 200g, and the main body weighs 1,400g. The two together are exactly 1.8kg, which is the same weight as the Marshall Middleton Bluetooth speaker we have experienced before, and much lighter than the 2.3kg Devialet Mania.

You know, the HT-AX7 is a wireless speaker combination that can last for 30 hours of playback. Although its shape design is not easy to "hold with one hand", there is no problem in classifying it as a "portable speaker" in terms of weight.

If you want to put it into your backpack and go camping in the wilderness, the HT-AX7 will not be too much of a burden.

In terms of control, the main buttons such as Bluetooth switch, playback control, volume increase and decrease, and sound mode are all on the upper panel of the main box. Users can operate directly on the speaker, or remotely control the HT-AX7 through Sony's official app Home Entertainment Connect.

The bottom of the HT-AX7 is a flat oval gray base. The surface of the base has anti-slip treatment, which can reduce the impact of a small amount of vibration of the body during playback.

Behind the base is a USB-C interface, and a USB-C to C charging combination is provided in the package.

The sound bar speaker's built-in battery can provide 30 hours of playback time. Its battery not only provides power for its own playback, but also charges the two rear speakers. It takes 4 hours to fully charge the front speakers and 4.5 hours for the rear speakers.

Although the charging time is a little demanding, the HT-AX7 supports fast charging mode. After charging for 10 minutes, the sound bar can play for 2.5 hours, which is enough even outdoors. In addition, the HT-AX7 can be charged with a mobile power supply and other USB-C chargers, so it does not put too much pressure on battery life.

In terms of connection performance, the HT-AX7 supports Bluetooth version 5.2. During our test, we connected the HT-AX7 with a mobile phone in the office and played Genshin Impact and the mobile version of Call of Duty. The audio connection stability was pretty good and there was no interruption. continuous or significant delays. Considering that there are many Bluetooth devices (mouse, keyboard, headphones) used in the office, if the HT-AX7 can be used smoothly in this environment, then there will be no problem in using it at home.

In addition, HT-AX7 supports connecting two devices at the same time, and this mode is also smooth and stable under the influence of AAC encoding. It can also be quickly switched between devices, which is convenient for us multi-device users who need to switch between players, TV boxes, mobile phones, and computers.

However, HT-AX7 also provides two relatively basic encodings, AAC and SBC. It would be better if it could support LDAC with higher transmission specifications.

In terms of audio configuration, the HT-AX7 is equipped with Sony's most iconic S-Master digital amplifier. This digital amplifier will be familiar to all users of Sony audio products. It can be seen in Sony’s early wireless headphone products, sound bars, and in recent years, Walkman players and other audio equipment. It is a high-end amplifier. The sound quality is at its core.

In addition to the S-Master digital amplifier, the HT-AX7 is equipped with two X-Balanced speaker units on the front speakers.

The speaker unit is stretched laterally to increase the sound-emitting area, thereby enhancing the sound pressure and sound quality of the speaker output. It is a common design in Sony's speaker products that can improve the utilization of speaker space.

There is also a set of passive diaphragm units on both sides of the HT-AX7. Combined with its own active X-Balanced speaker unit, it can improve low-frequency performance and increase sound thickness.

Speaking of the core sound technology in HT-AX7, it must be the 360 ​​smart dome sound field effect that can expand 2-channel playback into a 3D sound field effect.

This technology does not need to support a specific surround sound solution, but works by processing existing sounds to present the effect. According to Sony's official explanation, the HT-AX7 speaker internally supports upconversion engine technology that can analyze audio in real time. It can separate and extract the sound source location, and the 2-channel content listened to by the user is upconverted at the speaker end. The sound sources are redistributed stereoscopically through the "360 Smart Dome Sound Field" to achieve the effect of expanding two-channel content into 3D surround sound.

In the actual experience, we divided the listening content into groups, used the background sound mode when listening to songs, and turned on the 360 ​​smart dome sound effects when watching performances and movies.

When listening to music, the HT-AX7 has a strong personal style, and it sounds a bit like listening to the Sony EXTRA BASS speakers. The bass volume is sufficient, but the overall feeling is not too muffled. The low frequency is straight forward, and every beat has enough power. When I used "A9, mello slow-jam" to listen to it, the HT-AX7 was able to ensure the detailed performance of the sound.

If you switch to watching movie clips, the effect of the 360 ​​smart dome sound field on the expansion of the sound field will become obvious, and the effect of sound moving in the space will be more prominent. Paired with the energetic low frequency, the HT-AX7 is much more shocking when watching videos than the Bluetooth speakers of the same positioning.

When listening to concerts and music programs, the sense of space will be more obvious than other integrated Bluetooth speakers, and the extension of the space will be more natural than those of traditional Bluetooth speakers.

Overall, the HT-AX7 is a very special product. Its appearance can be said to have broken the public's inherent impression of "home wireless speakers".

In the past, everyone thought that a strip-shaped wireless speaker should be placed in front of the TV, coupled with a subwoofer and a pair of satellite speakers scattered in the corner of the room, so that watching movies and listening to concerts would have a basic sense of immersion.

However, this combination takes up more space when used.

Even though Sony previously had a soundbar system like the HT-S40R, which has good sound effects and is simple and convenient to use, it still takes up the entire living room when using it. If you want to experience it at your desk, it is really unrealistic.

Compared with traditional soundbar systems, HT-AX7 can compress the listening space very small. You can divide a small listening area in front of the coffee table or desk, and then expand the HT-AX7 into a front and two rear states, and finally turn on the 360 ​​smart dome sound effect, and a flexible small listening space is completed.

In this way, playing games can increase the sense of space, listening to live recorded music can also broaden the sound field performance, and it has the flexibility of not needing to be fixed in a large space. HT-AX7 will be more suitable for users who pursue convenience.

In addition, the lightweight design is also convenient for users to take out and unfold the speakers outdoors. Then in background sound mode, the 2+1 combination can expand the playback space of the speakers. Compared with traditional camping concerts that require everyone to gather in front of a small speaker, the appearance of HT-AX7 allows everyone to sit a little more relaxedly.

Coupled with its own battery and USB-C charging, this makes the HT-AX7 very convenient to use outdoors.

That’s why I say that HT-AX7 is a very special product.

Its appearance not only breaks the public's inherent impression of home speakers, but also effectively integrates outdoor use and home use, lowering the threshold for home users. Whether you are an outdoor user who loves camping, or a user who wants to simply improve your private audio and video performance at home, HT-AX7 is a good choice.

"Buy it, it's not expensive."

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